Geneva River Park is Beautiful 365 Days a Year.

Geneva River Park is beautiful 365 days a year.

 These photos were taken Sept. 29, 2013.

River Park of Geneva overlooks the Fox River.

The flowers are mostly gone, but Little Bluestem ( Schizachyrium scoparium) blades have turned to copper, sparkling with white feathery blossoms.

The amphitheater is venue for weekly concerts in the summer and other events, but it’s a great place to just sit and enjoy the view.


Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) pods and silk add a dramatic note.

Prairie Dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepis) edges a path.  A good idea for a path or sidewalk in a home garden, as well.

Chinquapin Oak (Quercus muhlenbergii) grows on the right.  In nature it is found in rocky or gravelly wooded slopes, so it is at home here in this situation.

A lovely place to sit and enjoy the river view and the fragrance of the Prairie Dropseed–it is said that its aroma is reminiscent of  buttered popcorn.

A few aster are still in bloom.

Little Bluestem  used to be called Andropogon scoparius; its name has now been changed to Schizachyrium scoparium.  In the sunshine, the seeds sparkle like diamonds.

These grasses, particularly the short grasses, Little Bluestem and Prairie Dropseed, are well suited for the home garden.  They don’t hide the forbs or flowers;  they show them off. Here they are mixed in with blooming asters in my front yard, accented by the tall Indian Grass.

Every garden should have plentiful grasses.  Their dense roots  hold water like a sponge, thereby preventing runoff.   1/3 of their roots die every year, contributing humus to enrich the soil and providing channels for rainwater to enter the ground.

For more information on how Geneva River Park came to be, read my blog

written June 20, 2011.  It’s truly inspiring!



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8 Responses to Geneva River Park is Beautiful 365 Days a Year.

  1. June Keibler October 2, 2013 at 10:50 am #

    River Park is a fabulous contribution to the city of Geneva — thanks to Mary Zaander, Sharon and a host of dedicated volunteers. It is truly sensational on so many levels.

  2. Pat Hill October 2, 2013 at 11:17 am #

    You’re right, June. I should have included the reference to the previous post I wrote in June 20, 2011 regarding the history of the park and Mary Zaander’s role in it.

    Here it is and I’ll add it to the piece:

  3. Christa Orum-Keller October 2, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    Pat – Thanks for the highlight on this magical and wonderful native plant garden! It is a community treasure and a wonderful place to share. Christa

  4. Nancy Weiss October 2, 2013 at 5:24 pm #

    Just yesterday I was showing the garden to a new Geneva resident. We were both bowled over!! So very very beautiful!!
    ~ N.W.

  5. Suzanne Massion October 4, 2013 at 6:33 pm #

    Other than the most recent paintings I’ve done featuring River Park (This last June’s Get Outdoors Day) which showed a very green summery view, My past paintings of the park are mostly October scenes. The colors of grasses, shrubs turning to ochre, burgundy, and sienna are just an artist’s dream. A few years ago Sharon Jones told me about the park. I just had never stopped to see it. What a find.

  6. Pat Hill October 4, 2013 at 7:09 pm #

    A surprising number of people don’t know about it. I’m doing mybest to call people’s attention to it.

  7. Suzanne Massion October 5, 2013 at 9:40 am #

    Pat, your winter images are so beautiful. Would you consider going into River Park after a snow fall? Might be tricky to walk in. I don’t know if they shovel the paths or not. Maybe they close it in the winter.Listen to me! I should be telling myself to get in there,

  8. Pat Hill October 5, 2013 at 10:15 am #

    I’d like to do that–you’re right, it should be gorgeous!

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